Mayfield Flavour Decision '06
I first read about Mayfield Dairy's campaign to launch new flavours in Stuart Elliott's "In Advertising" column in the New York Times. His column reviews the campaign and included one fact that piqued my curiousity greatly: that the campaign was built by the Johnson Group, for advertising and Waterhouse Public Relations.
Hmmm. Why would Mayfield choose both an ad agency and a PR firm to run this campaign? What was it that PR brought to the table? I figured the answer to those questions would make it a great case study for my presentation in Halifax so I called Waterhouse to find out why. I spoke with Nathalie Strickland, APR, about the campaign.
She said Watershouse and the Johnson Group worked together to get the Mayfield business because, together, the could bring the best of each discipline to the table. Nathalie noted that while it is generally accepted that advertising can send out messages to people repeatedly and can push sales up in the short term, but what it can't do is make people feel a part of that message. The underlying belief in the very smart Mayfield Flavour Decision Campaign '06 is that PR is better equipped to build relationships, brand loyalty and repeat buys in the long term.
The other part I loved about the campaign is that it truly engaged the public. Rather than just introducing new flavours and tracking sales to see which was the most popular, Waterhouse and the Johnson Group built a whole campaign around engaging its customers and asking them what they thought, what they wanted. The campaign, as seen from the inside, was a great example of using PR to build relationships in the consumer market.
The Mayfield example was a great addition to my presentation in Halifax and sparked some very interesting discussion during the Q&A session. Many thanks to Nathalie for her time!